The Director-General of the Internal Audit Agency (IAA), Dr Eric Oduro Osae, has stated that the laws of Ghana allow squatters to claim ownership of lands they have stayed on for sometime.
According to Dr Oduro Osae, if land owners fail to develop their land within 10 years and also fail to pay someone to stay on it and look after it for them, unlawful residents on the land have the right to claim ownership of the land.
In a GTV interview monitored by GhanaWeb, the director-general of the IAA said that this right of squatters is the adverse possession doctrine which the laws of the country allow.
“If you allow somebody to live on your land for more than 10 years whether the person owns it or not, while the person is on the land and the person is looking after the land for you, the person can claim ownership – that is the adverse possession (doctrine).
“If you have a land and you want to develop it within 10 years, why won’t you develop it? In fact, when you are buying a land, in the indenture it is indicated that within a period of time you have to develop it. If you don’t develop it they have a right to re-entry.
“… the law of immovable possession requires that there is an adverse possession clause and it means if you put somebody on a land, a squatter, occasional you will have to tip him or give him someone. If you pay him (squatter) then he is your staff to look after the land for you,” he said.
Dr Oduro Osae reiterated that if land owners fail to develop their lands or do not pay squatters staying on them, they will have to compensate the squatters with a huge amount of money if they want squatters out.
He also said that persons who buy lands should carefully read the contract because they are various clauses that if they fail to adhere to will lead to them losing the land.
Watch the interview below:
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